October 17, 2018 / 5:21 AM / a month ago

Roche posts modest Q3 sales beat as new drugs offset biosimilar hit

ZURICH, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Roche's third-quarter sales rose 7 percent, above analyst forecasts, as sales of new drugs including its multiple sclerosis therapy Ocrevus helped offset the impact that rivals' copies are having on the Swiss group's top-selling drugs.

Third-quarter sales rose to nearly 14 billion Swiss francs ($14.12 billion), compared to the average forecast of analysts of 13.8 billion francs in a Reuters poll.

Roche confirmed on Wednesday its outlook for 2018 sales to grow at a mid-single-digit rate. Core earnings per share, including benefits from U.S. tax reform changes, would grow in the mid-teen-digit percentages. ($1 = 0.9914 Swiss francs) (Reporting by John Miller; Editing by Michael Shields)

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